O is for October and all things orange as far as I’m concerned! The beautiful leaves changing, pumpkins, carrots, sweet potatoes…mmmm.
Can you believe how many years I spent microwave “baking” my russets and sweets whenever we had baked potato night? Until a few weeks ago, when my sister served baked-in-the-oven potatoes with the skins crispy and seasoned, it had been years since I made baked potatoes due to my efforts in reducing starchy foods. With time, I’ve realized that I’m only willing to do what is sustainable long term; meaning I am not giving up baked potatoes!
Enter my healthier but still very fulfilling take. Both regular and sweet potatoes are up there on the glycemic index so I added some extras that would prevent a post-carbohydrate crash!
- Fresh, fiber rich, low glycemic index broccoli as a topping
- Raw peppers and scallions for added flavor, fiber, and we try to include raw foods in as many meals as possible as they retain all of their original vitamins, help bring the body to disease fighting alkaline state, and are better for digestion
- Coconut oil which is a healthy fat which slows down the absorption of sugar.
- Cheese adds protein which also helps balance blood sugar and signal your brain that you are satisfied.
- For a non dairy option but cheesy flavor, you can use nutritional yeast (pictured above) which is deactivated meaning it will not worsen any yeasty health issues and cannot be used as a leavener. It is a complete protein, high in vitamin B12, and contains iron as well. (Btw, it is amazing on my popcorn.)
Because the skin is SO delicious this way, I do encourage you to buy organic potatoes as most are highly pesticided. See here for the Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen list. You can make this recipe with white or sweet and if you want to read more about the difference, I like this Cleveland Clinic synopsis.
Baked Potato Night Done Right
GF, GRF, NF, can be DF if no cheese
4 large potatoes of choice, washed and wiped dry
1 bag fresh broccoli florets or 1 pound broccoli,chopped
1 bunch scallions, chopped
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 cup shredded cheese (2 tbsp – 1/4 cup per potato)
1/2 garlic powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
Extra salt and pepper on hand
4 tsp olive oil
1 tbsp coconut oil
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. (Read about my Breville)
Rub each potato with 1 tsp of olive oil.
Pierce with a knife or fork 3-4 times.
Sprinkle each potato with desired amount of salt and pepper.
Place potatoes on a cookie sheet and bake for 45-50 minutes.
Heat coconut oil in a wide pan (cast iron if possible) over medium heat. Add broccoli, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Saute for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Carefully slice each baked potato in half lengthwise. Add broccoli, peppers, scallions, cheese/nutritional yeast and a drizzle of olive or coconut oil. My Fast & Furious Ranch Dressing was a big hit on these too!